New Zealand has a great deal to offer apart from the Sauvignon Blanc (SB) that it is best known for. Particularly many of the wineries we visited has excellent Gewürztraminer, more experimental takes on the SB, and other aromatic whites. Unfortunately it's difficult to get a hold of much beyond the classic SB and odd Pinot Noir or two back in the US due to the rather limited production volumes of the more interesting wines.
For those of you keeping score, our favorites from the Nelson area were:
1. Woolaston (interesting SB aged in acacia wood)
2. Waimea (my favorite classic Marlborough SB and a Cabernet Franc-Syrah-Viognier blend called Trev's Red)
1. Hans Herzog (eclectic selections, a very fine Arneise and barrel-aged SB)
2. Johanneschof (excellent aromatic whites such as their fine Gewürztraminer)
3. Fromm (oldest Syrah vines in NZ)
As I write we are aboard the MV Straitsman ferry (the first of many ferries during this adventure) steaming our way from the South Island of New Zealand to the North Island. The Northern shore is beginning to form in the distance as if the cloud itself were congealing into solid state. The gentleman sitting next to me tells me that this phenomenon is known as a "sea fret" or "haar". Unfortunately some things cannot be captured on film.